We’ve made it through the majority of January with little to no snow. Don’t celebrate just yet, because this weekend NY is preparing for up to a foot of snowfall. Snow, ice and dropping temperatures are the cause of a lot of complaints this time of year in a Chiropractic office. Slip and fall injuries from ice, old injuries flaring up due to cold and shivering, and most commonly sore muscles and pain due to snow shoveling.
Here are some of the American Chiropractic Association’s tips for shoveling snow:
- If you must shovel snow, be careful! Listen to the weather forecast so you can rise early and have plenty of time to shovel before you start with your day.
- Layer clothing to keep your muscles flexible and warm.
- Shoveling can strain “de-conditioned” muscles throughout the body. Do some warm-up stretching.
- When you shovel, push the snow straight ahead. Don’t throw it, these sudden twisting and turning movements are hard on the body, walk it to the snowbank instead.
- Bend your knees to lift. Use the strong developed muscles of the legs instead of the arms and back to do the work.
- Take frequent rest breaks. A fatigued body is asking for injury, take the stress off of your muscles periodically.
- Stop if you feel chest pain, are fatigued, or have shortness of breath. You may need emergency medical help.
After shoveling, soreness is a common complaint. Use an ice pack on your sore muscles and joints for 20 minutes. Repeat after a few hours if necessary.
If after a day you are still not feeling better, call your Chiropractor!